Smartthings vs device names vs Alexa

Greetings to one and all.

I’ve been running ST for a couple of years now and closing in on 50 devices including locks, door and window sensors, temperatur sensors, thermostats and lights in a few shapes and colours.

Now the last few months I’ve been batteling with integrating Alexa into this mix and I find that I am having a hard time. It seems to me it boils down to the naming of devices and the fact that Alexa cannot separate “Cinema” (the room) from “Cinema” (the thermostats), “Cinema” (the heater) etc.

Are there any good documentation out there for how to set this up so that you can use any voice controller to manage the environment?

I’m thinking - I can of course name the devices like but wont that make it hard to address the actual device itself?

Tips and feedback are now very welcome.


You can rename Alexa devices to anything you want from within the app. Sometimes Alexa doesn’t like certain words, well not with my English accent anyway! The conversion will happen automatically between Alexa and SmartThings as I believe it’s all done with tokens rather than the actual words.


Different things will work for different people, and for different voice assistants, but there are a couple of existing threads on this that might be of interest.

Go to the community – created wiki, look on the quick browse lists down at the bottom of that page in the “project report” section, and choose the list on voice projects.

The main thing with Alexa which makes it really helpful, though, is that you can put a device into multiple echo groups. So if you have a name you want to use for a device which is different then the name in SmartThings, you can just create a unique group name and put a single device into it. That’s one way to clear things up.

Just as one example, we have a small room in my house and we are three housemates. One of us calls it the study, one of us calls it the office, one of us calls it the den. We all know what the others are referring to, but of course it confused things when we added echo into the mix.

So we ended up just making three different groups and putting the same devices into that group. That solved that issue very neatly. ( this was before Amazon added the ability to tie a command to a specific echo device.)

Anyway, take a look at the other topics on the voice project list and see if they give you any ideas. :sunglasses:

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